Re-Connect Café employing at-risk young men

August 7, 2013 2:46:14 PM PDT
You may usually think of coffee houses as cool gathering places.

But one café in Brooklyn is thinking not just about its clientele, but also about its workers.

It's hired at risk, troubled kids, offering them a job, and a chance.

There are rave reviews for a brand new café in Bedford-Stuyvesant, serving up coffee to the community with the hopes of bettering the community.

"I grew up around here," said Efrain Hernandez, café owner.

Efrain Hernandez opened the cafe with about $40,000; money he raised by selling fresh produce and Christmas trees, and from donations.

The people who work there are young men from the neighborhood, where unemployment is high and opportunities are scarce.

"It gives guys a few bucks to further your education," Hernandez said.

It's the spirit of working, learning, and serving the community that he learned from Father Jim O'Shea.

When Efrain was imprisoned for selling drugs, Father O'Shea continued to have faith in him and together they dreamed up Re-Connect Café, that helps these young men re-connect with their best selves.

They are being led by a product of the community.

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